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Strange New World: How Thinkers and Activists Redefined Identity and Sparked the Sexual Revolution (Trueman)

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How did the world arrive at its current, disorienting state of identity politics, and how should the church respond? Historian Carl R. Trueman shows how influences ranging from traditional institutions to technology and pornography moved modern culture toward an era of “expressive individualism.” Investigating philosophies from the Romantics, Nietzsche, Marx, Wilde, Freud, and the New Left, he outlines the history of Western thought to the distinctly sexual direction of present-day identity politics and explains the modern implications of these ideas on religion, free speech, and personal identity. 

For fans of Trueman’s The Rise and Triumph of the Modern SelfStrange New World offers a more concise presentation and application of some of the most critical topics of our day.

Read Chapter 1


Table of Contents: 

Chapter 1: Welcome to This Strange New World
Chapter 2: Romantic Roots
Chapter 3: Prometheus Unbound
Chapter 4: Sexualizing Psychology, Politicizing Sex
Chapter 5: The Revolt of the Masses
Chapter 6: Plastic People, Liquid World
Chapter 7: The Sexual Revolution of the LGBTQ+
Chapter 8: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness
Chapter 9: Strangers in This Strange New World



Carl R. Trueman (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is professor of biblical and religious studies at Grove City College. He is a contributing editor at First Things, an esteemed church historian, and a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Trueman has authored or edited more than a dozen books, including The Creedal ImperativeLuther on the Christian Life; and Histories and Fallacies. He is a member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.


“Carl Trueman is one of the truly vital thinkers of our time. In Strange New World, he explains just how the West’s preoccupation with a navel-gazing concern for emotional ‘authenticity’ has crippled our ability to think—and is consequently undermining the future of our civilization. A true must-read.”
Ben Shapiro, Host, The Ben Shapiro Show; Editor Emeritus, The Daily Wire; author, The Authoritarian Moment

“At last, one of the most important books of the century is available in a more accessible format for the general reader! If you are confused about the moral and spiritual chaos overtaking Western civilization, and anguished over the seeming impotence of Christianity to stop the collapse, Strange New World is the book you absolutely must read. Here, in a single volume, is the best diagnosis of our cultural crisis. Anyone who wants to get themselves and their children and communities through this new dark age with their faith and sanity intact needs to read Carl Trueman’s blockbuster.”
Rod Dreher, author, The Benedict Option and Live Not by Lies

“As I have traveled the world, I have often hired tour guides to lead me through unfamiliar locations. Their expertise has always proven helpful in explaining what I am seeing and experiencing. And in much the same way, Strange New World is essentially a guided tour to modern times. Trueman acts as a wise and trusted guide to a culture that has become increasingly uncomfortable and unfamiliar. I highly recommend you take the tour.”
Tim Challies, blogger,

“An essential primer on how the world went mad. Trueman traces the origin and history of our worst ideas so that the nonscholar can understand why so many intellectuals are talking complete nonsense with such absolute conviction. A good read, a smart read, and an important read.”
Andrew Klavan, author, The Great Good Thing; host, The Andrew Klavan Show

“Carl Trueman is one of the most important public intellectuals of our time, and this book, Strange New World, should be required reading for anyone seeking to understand our present age. Trueman offers a brilliant analysis of the modern mind, the autonomous self, identity politics, and the sexual revolution. This book demonstrates courage on every page, and the reader will draw courage from reading it. Read it and tell your friends about it.”
R. Albert Mohler Jr., President and Centennial Professor of Christian Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“In a rare combination of erudition and clarity, Carl Trueman explains us to ourselves. From Rousseau and the Romantics, through Nietzsche, Marx, and Freud, to today’s increasingly incoherent gender theorists, Trueman outlines the history of ideas that brought us almost ineluctably to this moment. But he doesn’t leave us here; by revealing the wrong turns, he maps out a way forward, all the while manifesting the integrity and charity of a true gentleman. In a world of confusion, Strange New World is crystal clear; its author, the teacher we need today.”
Erika Bachiochi, author, The Rights of Women: Reclaiming a Lost Vision

“This book is a You Are Here marker for disoriented pilgrims in postmodernity. Its sober analysis of where we are and how we got here will equip readers to engage contemporary confusion over identity. Strange New World makes the important argument of Carl Trueman’s earlier work, The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self, widely accessible and an excellent resource for classrooms, small groups, and individual inquiry.”
Jennifer Patterson, Director of the Institute of Theology and Public Life, Reformed Theological Seminary